Ruth & I have not been to a gathering since mid-March, 2020, but this weekend, if the smoke clears and it rains, we will attend a going-away party. Friend Donna is moving to the Phoenix area next week and some mutual friends and acquaintances we have never met are getting together for a big send-off. None of us have gathered socially since the COVID era began and many of us are nervous about this. No gifts was an agreed upon rule.
All the guests have agreed to the rules we will follow. Ruth & I are bringing wipes in case someone has to use bathroom. All food has been store-bought including the salads that Ruth & I are providing. We will sit outside on Marcia & Pat’s back patio for the duration of this party. Someone is bringing a desert. We will probably wear masks except while eating and drinking, and I suspect we will never sit close to each other. Ruth has been organizing this gathering and talking to the anticipated guests. No one has ventured into a group activity in several months and all are looking forward to a nostalgic social event with perhaps some elbow bumping.
My primary care physician approves of this gathering. He also recently told me that I can resume travel with the imposition of a few new rules. He says travelers are still taking chances if they dine in sit-down restaurants. He recommends take-out meals or buying food at grocery stores and eating it back in our hotel or motel room. He says motels and other places to stay should be OK if we wipe down often used objects like in-room remotes and light switches and out-of-room elevator buttons. He has no fear of accommodation safety. He says that the wise ask the desk staff what has been done to sanitize guest rooms. He is not ready to approve airline travel yet, foreign destinations are still not perceived as safe, and all travel should be done by passenger car or the like. Keep sanitizing materials in the vehicle. When stopping for gas, make sure you wipe down the public gas pump handle, and wash hands thoroughly when using restrooms. Most attractions have reopened with restrictions, so the wise traveler inquires before sampling tourist attractions
Ruth and I are looking forward to planning travel again, wondering if we still remember how, and being anxious about forgetting something important. Donna and others have successfully been on the road without negative consequences, so we should be fine.